Lahore is undoubtedly ancient. Legend has it that it was founded by
Loh, son of Rama, the hero of Hindu epic, the Ramayana. Some others
think that the name means Loh-awar: a “fort strong as iron”.
Lahore came under Muslim rule in 1206 with Qutub-ud-Din Aibak and
reached its glory during the Mughal period. As the Mughal power
dwindled Punjab came under Sikh sway. By 1765 it stood partitioned
among three chieftains, Lahna Singh, Sobha Singh and Gujar Singh. In
1799 it was captured by Ranjeet Singh. The Lahore of Sikh period has
been referred to as: “a melancholy picture of a fallen splendor”.
Sikhs were finally defeated by the British and Lahore annexed to the
empire. Initially the British troops were stationed at Anarkali but
later moved to Mian Mir. It was this that came to be known as Lahore
Cantonment and was established in 1850 by Lt. Gen Sir Charles
Napier. It was a beautifully planned Cantonment with wide roads,
parks and well laid-out living and unit areas. In 1968, the
Cantonment limits were extended to include a large area with an
overall rural complexion.
The Cantonment with this large extension become extremely difficult
to manage, therefore in 1998 it was bifurcated into two
Cantonments, Lahore and Walton.